[Wikimedia-l] making tech journalism easier to read
qgil at wikimedia.org
Wed May 22 16:48:46 UTC 2013
On 05/22/2013 08:39 AM, Florence Devouard wrote:
> My main suggestion (valid for all posts, technical or not) would be to
> start with a clearly identified cap as summary. And put an extra effort
> so that this cap is written in simple and straightforward message.
Yes! Don't assume readers will reach the end of your post. You will be
lucky if they end the lead paragraph! This is the Who, What, When,
Where, Why (and How) rule. Skip any of this if you wish, but do it
Looking at more examples of first paragraphs:
Getting ready for ULS everywhere
Pretty ok, although an extra sentence explaining what is Universal
Language Selector would be welcome. Yes, it has been explained in
several posts in the same blog but we can't simply assume that your
readers today have also read those previous articles.
Request for proposals: MediaWiki release management
The actual lead paragraph is the 4th, and only re-sorting the paragraphs
4,5,1,2,3 would make the text a lot clearer.
(I'm sitting literally next to Greg and Rob so I hope they don't get mad
Also related: "Request for proposals: MediaWiki release management" is
not very clear as a headline for outsiders. I hesitated sharing the
official tweet that came with this header. Erik put it this way: "The
Wikimedia Foundation is looking for a partner to develop the third party
MediaWiki open source ecosystem" and my retweet quickly followed.
We can probably add "The Microblogging Sharing Test" to our headlines. :)
No math or script will easily catch any of this, and this is why big
media must keep paying plenty of humans to write good stories.
Technical Contributor Coordinator @ Wikimedia Foundation
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